At the other side, Shen Qiu was talking to Shen Xin.
"Father, that Prince Rui skills is definitely accumulated more than a few years. From appearance, it should be accumulated since young. Otherwise it would not be possible for him to win me within a few moves." Shen Qiu thought for a bit and continued, "In addition his moves are all very vicious and could not be compared to those soldiers. It is reasonable to say that the Imperial family need not need to be like so." Finishing he that said hatefully, "This time I have taken it too lightly. The next time I must beat him up till he have a new respect for me."
Shen Xin waved his hands, "Alright, you are not his opponent."
"Father." Shen Qiu turned pale with fright, "You did not mean that because of my one mistake you take me lightly? I really lowered my guard this time and who knew that even though he looked like a good looking white-face scholar, he hid his real talent. I…"
"These are the things he hid?" Shen Xin interrupted his words and a trace of complex expression appeared on his face.
"Father?" Shen Qiu did not understand, "What do you mean by that? Could it be that there are still things that he is hiding from us? Is he a good person or not?"
"Alright. You go out." Shen Xin said, "Don't indulge in flights of fancy and practice your martial arts well."
Shen Qiu, "…"
He only lost once. Why did is looked like he had become scholar who had no strength to truss a chicken?
Shen Qiu left angrily. He planned from this day forth to spar with others in the training field every day. But… When Shen Qiu left, he could not help but look back at Shen Xin.
Why did Father looked like he was very worried?
Shen Xin was indeed very worried. This worried was gradually magnified in his heart that it had almost reached to the point where it could not be concealed. He wanted to do something to divert his attention but the more he did that, the more he would think about this matter.
But he could not talk to anyone as he did not know how big the impact would be if he told someone.
He let Shen Qiu test out Prince Rui's martial arts skills and the intention behind was to see if Prince Rui was qualified to be a son-in-law of the Shen family. Before today, Prince Rui was only a name on the Imperial decree of Emperor Wen Hui, thus the Shen family had no expectation on his abilities. They regarded Prince Rui as one who had malicious ambitions and that Shen Miao's marriage was not fair.
But looking at Luo Xue Yan's happy interaction with Prince Rui today, per Shen Xin's understanding of his wife, Luo Xue Yan was very satisfied with Prince Rui.
If Prince Rui already started to satisfy Luo Xue Yan then once could not treat Prince Rui as simple as a name on the Imperial decree. He must become the son-in-law of the Shen family and had to go through different types of critical and demanding tests.
Martial art was one of it. One did not request for exceptional martial arts skills but had to be able to protect Shen Miao's safety. As a husband of a female, if one's wife encountered danger, at least one must be able to protect her safety.
Shen Xin thought it like that but unexpectedly some other things came out in this test.
The few younger generations were unable to see clearly but Luo Xue Yan and he could see clearly. It was especially so for Shen Xin that each moves that both of them made could be seen clearly by him. Shen Xin had once seen someone using the move of locking the dagger to the throat that Prince Rui used.
The Shen family and the Xie family did not see eye to eye in court for generations as the Shen family paid attention to the rules and regulation with the troops while the Xie family focus on surprise attack and did not follow common sense. Their ancestors had fought for so many years and upon reaching Shen Xin's generation, it was so natural that one did not know why the two big aristocratic family were at odds with one another.
The one that understood you the most was not friends but your enemy and this saying was very trues. Shen Xin had been secretly comparing with Xie Ding since youth. The Shen family had the Shen family spear which will kill everything within its surrounding. The Xie family did not have the Xie family spear but Xie Ding's dagger move of locking the dagger to the throat was envied by others. It was most suitable for assassinating commanding General. Thinking about it, it was indeed terrifying to suddenly have a dagger at one throat even when one was fighting on horseback with a spear in one's hand.
Just based on this move, Xie Ding almost won all the time.
Xie Ding did not pass down this move to anyone but his only Di son, Xie Jing Xing. He even did not pass it down to his two Shu sons. When Xie Jing Xing was young and was exchanging blows with other, he used this move before and at that time Shen Xin coincidentally happened to be at the scene and was surprise by the fact that Xie Jing Xing was able to execute this move so ferociously at such a young age. He even made a slight change to Xie Ding's original move and it became even more vicious.
When Prince Rui and Shen Qiu were sparring, this move was used.
Or it could be said that the move that was used was after Xie Jing Xing had slightly changed it and the angle was exactly the same. One did not know if it was done intentionally or not as it was much slower that it was originally, which was almost an deliberate attempt to let Shen Xin see it clearly.
Shen Xin could not hide the shock and horror when he saw that moment. Other than to cover it up with silence, he did not know what else to think.
Xie Jing Xing was already dead two years ago in the battlefield in Northern Jiang. But how would Prince Rui of Great Liang would know about the locking the dagger to the throat move? Especially when it was the exact same moves?
Even if another one did the same action, the same tricks, there would be a little difference but Prince Rui's and Xie Jing Xing's figure at that moment merged together and there were of no difference to Shen Xin's eyes.
Then a strange thought burst out. Could it be Prince Rui was Xie Jing Xing?
Xie Jing Xing was already dead.
Shen Xin on one end felt that his thought was ridiculous and a joke but at on another end unable to restrain himself to think about this thought. He even felt that during the exchange between Shen Qiu, Prince Rui's moves were that slow that it seemed that it was deliberately done to let him see clearly.
Could it be that Prince Rui wanted him to see this fact?
Shen Xin's heart was in doubt but it was not good to talk to another about this. Thinking about it, it was better to investigate first before take a better look at a clearer picture.
After all he was not willing to see Shen Miao hurt. If Prince Rui was Xie Jing Xing then the various entanglements would not be that easy.
As the days passed, there was only a few days left till the end of the year. For ordinary people, the end of the year was the happiest period because it was always better to treat oneself better after an entire year. By eating, drinking and playing well, one would be happy every day. The happy days were short lived thus one would feel that one suffered a loss.
However for Pei Lang, each day passed slowly. Everyday his body was toss around and a small piece of flesh would be grinded and the next day, it would be continued on. Sometimes he could not wait for a quick death than being tortured this slowly.
He did not know how long he had been locked in the underground prison in the residence of Prince Ding. Other than the guards who were tormenting, even Fu Xiu Yi did not come over. The daily increasing torture made it painful for him as both of his legs were dripping wet with blood and sweat. He had heard that after today, the bones at his kneecap would be smashed.
Once one's kneecaps were smashed, one could only kneel and wait on others of the rest of one's life. To those who were proud, like Pei Lang, it was undoubtedly a nightmare of a lifetime. Fu Xiu Yi indeed knew the weakness of human nature. For a young man who had a full promising life to look forward to but had to kneel in the future to live, even if one were to live on for a day, one's life would be completely destroyed that it was better to die instead.
Strangely, even at such a time, Pei Lang did not plan to sell out Shen Miao.
Even though he rationally persuaded himself to speak of it as it would be a release after he spoke about it. Even if one were to die, it was better than going through this endless continuation. He was not considered friends with Shen Miao and it was only Shen Miao threatening him with Liu Ying and he had no choice but to work for Shen Miao. Even though Shen Miao was one speak fiercely, she had never take action upon innocent people. Even if he really betrayed her, Shen Miao would definitely not implicate the innocent Liu Ying.
After all, such torture like this was indeed too painful.
Even though one's reasoning was as such, every time when was about to loosen his mouth, he would keep it shut at the end. It was as if after saying it, he would have committed a unpardonable crime. Pei Lang was thinking could it be that in the past lifetime he had owed some big debts with Shen Miao? Else how would he be able to willing to suffer so much for her?
It was just that… After such a long time, no one came to save him. Pei Lang's heart was somewhat disappointed.
Shen Miao most likely had forgotten about him or it could be that in her game of chess, sacrificing an insignificant piece was not enough to place it in her heart.
Just as he was thinking about it, he suddenly heard outside piping up. He did not know what was going on but only knew that there was lots of shouting and noise before sound of broken things were heard.
The heat wave almost attacked him.
Someone shouted out, "There is a fire! A fire!"
Pei Lang's heart was startled. This was Fu Xiu Yi's underground prison and normally only Fu Xiu Yi's close confidants and prison guards would come over. No one else would come. Because of the strict surveillance, there was no mistake made normally. However one did not expect that there would be a fire but most likely it would be extinguished soon.
However this time Pei Lang had guessed incorrectly. Not only the fire was not extinguished, it had grown bigger and some black smoke even entered. Those cluttering footsteps outside were getting weaker, as tough it was further and further away.
Pei Lang's prison cell was the furthest away so on normal days one would not be able to see it and it was as if he was separated from the rest. When the fire was raised, there was none inside but when the fire in front got bigger, it would separate the inside and outside into two and the deeper it was, the dangerous it got. Generally, there would not be anyone who would dare to enter.
This was much less for Pei Lang. There would not be anyone in this world who would risk their life to save him.
Seeing the waves of heat rolling, Pei Lang seemed to have experience this before, as it he had seen it somewhere and a feeling of relief appeared in his heart.
Just like this then… Ending like this was also good.
Just when he closed his eyes, one heard an unfamiliar voice in front of him, "Oh? Dead already?"
Pei Lang opened his eyes in shock and saw a black clad person standing in front. That person's face was covered with a black cloth, making one unable to see the person's features clearly. Only a pair of bright and vibrant eyes was revealed and it was not at all panicking in this ferocious fire. Seeing that Pei Lang did not answer, he seemed to be impatient and directly open the door with a key, that one did not know where he got it from.
This person actually came to rescue him.
Pei Lang could not believe in his heart but this appearance and attire could not be for anything else.
However Pei Lang's heart moved. Why did this person's eyes so familiar?